Bolognese Sauce, known in Italian as Ragù alla Bolognese is a rich and meaty sauce that is slowly simmered for several hours to intensify its flavor. Serve it over pasta or use it in lasagna or baked ziti for a hearty, flavorful meal. Freeze any leftovers for a quick and satisfying weeknight meal. As an added bonus, it’s quite easy to make.
Ingredients for Bolognese Sauce:
I used the following ingredients for this delicious Bolognese Sauce: Ground turkey, sweet Italian sausage, onion, garlic, Italian seasoning, dried basil, salt, freshly ground black pepper, granulated sugar, crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, and red wine.
Making the Bolognese Sauce:
As a first step, I browned the ground turkey and Italian sausage in a Dutch oven over medium heat.
When the meats were nicely browned, I dumped them into a colander and rinsed them under hot water to remove as much fat as possible. I learned this trick years ago from a neighbor. While the meat was draining, I wiped out the Dutch oven with a paper towel, added the onions and garlic, and cooked them over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Over the years, I’ve concluded that it’s really not necessary for the Bolognese Sauce to cook the onions and garlic in oil.
Before returning the meat to the Dutch oven, I used my fingertips to break any clumps up into small pieces. Once this was done, I added the meat to the onions and garlic, along with the spices, salt, pepper, and sugar, and stirred the mixture to ensure that everything was well combined.
Next, came the “wet” ingredients – crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, and red wine.
I stirred everything together, brought the mixture to a slow boil, covered the Dutch oven, and put it into a 300° F oven for about 3 hours. Half way through, I gave the mixture a stir, and returned it to the oven for the remainder of the time. I could have simmered it covered, on the stove for several hours, or cooked it in the slow cooker, set on high for 5 hours. The Bolognese Sauce was absolutely delicious. I’m going to use it to make some Baked Ziti (stay tuned!). Yum!
- 1 1/4 pounds (20 ounces) lean ground turkey
- 1 pound (16 ounces) sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
- 1 large onion chopped (2 cups)
- 5 cloves garlic minced (1 Tablespoon)
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
- 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes, preferably salt free
- 15 ounce can tomato sauce, preferably salt free
- 12 ounce (2 6-ounce) cans tomato paste, preferably salt free
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- Brown turkey and Italian sausage in a large Dutch oven over medium heat, breaking up the meat as it cooks. Transfer to a colander; run under hot water to remove as much grease as possible. Allow to cool; rub meat between fingers to break up into small pieces.
- Wipe Dutch oven with paper towel to remove any remaining grease. Add onions and garlic. Sauté over medium heat for about five minutes.
- Return meat to Dutch oven. Add Italian seasoning, basil, salt, pepper, and sugar. Stir well to combine.
- Add crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, and tomato paste; stir well to combine. Add wine; stir well to combine.
- Cover and reduce heat to medium low. Cook for two hours, adding more liquid if necessary.
- Note: Rather than cooking on stove, transfer mixture to a crock pot and cook on high setting for five hours; or cook covered in 300° F oven for three hours.
- Serve over pasta, or use in lasagna or baked ziti.
Yield: 8 cups.